After the hustle and bustle of the holidays and then the craziness of the getting back into the routine and swing of things (at work and even getting into a routine at home again), a little time to relax and focus on wellness is needed. So today I’m going to share with you how to plan a relaxing wellness weekend getaway.
Can you believe that the first month of the year is almost over? I am still coming to terms with that. It’s no secret that this year I am trying to focus on being healthier (you may have noticed some of the healthy recipes I’ve been sharing? Like these no bake oatmeal cookie energy bites or this 5 ingredient slow cooker salsa chicken and quinoa) and part of being healthier is having a healthy mindset. For me, a healthy mindset comes from relaxing, recharging, and taking a little wellness weekend getaway with my husband.
Seven is a lucky number, right? So here are the seven pillars for planning a relaxing wellness weekend getaway:
- Choose a location
- Find lodging that offers amenities and services in line with the theme of your weekend
- Plan for activities for both things you have done before and for trying something new
- Make an itinerary, but don’t overcrowd it
- Research the weather, plan for what to pack
- Plan to relax; unplug
- Go on your relaxing wellness weekend getaway!
One location that I could not stop talking about this last year was Destination Kohler (as you may remember from when I shared 13 Things I Learned From Attending the Kohler Food & Wine Experience). Kohler, Wisconsin is about an hour north of Milwaukee where we live. I had absolutely loved attending the Food and Wine Experience in Kohler, but was a little sad that my husband hadn’t been able to enjoy it with me, so in the back of my mind I always knew I wanted to go back with him. Well, my family must have been picking up on my no-so-subtle hints, because for Christmas they gave us concert tickets to see Postmodern Jukebox as part of the Distinguished Guest Series in Kohler, WI.
Since the concert was on a Friday night, we decided that we’d make a weekend of it. I went on The American Club Resort’s website and was captivated by the picture of The American Club with white lights twinkling and bouncing off the snow covered landscape. A few clicks later I learned that The American Club has a bunch of winter activities, including a Winter Wellness Experience (discounts on wellness activities) and I had my mind made up: we were going to plan a relaxing wellness weekend getaway.
From golf lessons, yoga classes, trap shooting, to spa services and incredible dining options, there are wellness activities for all at The American Club!
I wanted us to do a variety of activities – both things that each of us like separately (me: cooking class, hubby: golf) and then things we had never tried before (trap shooting). So we embarked on this trip together, and shared experiences are always so much fun!
- The American Club Resort rooms: pure luxury and every detail thought out. The rooms are amazing. They say ‘it’s the little things…’ and The American Club has thought of everything. The beds are insanely comfortable, there are courtesy slippers to wear around the room, they leave little chocolate mints in your room for turn down service and they leave a little itinerary of the happenings at the resort for the next day (I loved that little detail, it let me see all the different things we could do in terms of activities) and then there are THE bathrooms! Besides the sheer beauty of the bathrooms with state of the art Kohler appliances and fixtures, there are the comfiest, fluffiest robes ever! And the showers, omg! In the mornings I took so long getting ready, that I left my husband 5 minutes until we had to go….oops! But seriously, rain showers are where it’s at!
- Getting around The American Club resort is very easy. When you arrive at the resort you pull up, a valet (wearing a top hat, may I add) comes to greet you and then whisks your car away. During your stay you get around on super quick and efficient shuttles. Wherever you go they always tell you to just have the front desk call for them, and within minutes they show up! It’s super convenient, so answering the question “would you like another glass of wine?” becomes ever so easy to answer. Should you want to walk, they have beautiful grounds and paths, so that’s always an option too, we opted to talk a walk and it started to snow, it was beautiful!
- Shopping? Why yes, Kohler has over 20 specialty shops at The Shops at Woodlake. Nestled in the shops happens to be Craverie Chocolatier Cafe where they sell Kohler Chocolate (I’m pretty sure we bought one of everything, and then also gifts for my chocolate-obsessed family).
- In the shops is also where the demonstration kitchen is. Seeing as I love to cook (did you know that about me? 😉 ) I was definitely thrilled that there was a class happening during my stay. We took a class called Party Appetizers & Winter Cocktails with Chef Zeke Fitzgerald and Peter Moeller from The Horse & Plow (The Horse & Plow have the world famous cheese curds that are soooo good). We learned how to make a few different appetizers, the favorite of which was a garlicy shrimp with grilled bread, I could seriously eat that stuff all day, and a cocktail called The Midwest Mule. I don’t day drink normally, but oooohey, with that cocktail, I downed the whole thing and was then looking longingly over at my husband and asking him if he was going to finish his! I definitely see both those recipes coming to the blog soon!
- After our cooking class, we decided to try out a golf lesson at the Kohler Golf Academy. I have never held a golf club in my life, like ever. Mini golf? Oh yeah, I’m a pro at that (big ‘ole J/K to that, I’ve played mini golf a whopping ONCE in my entire life). So I was a little nervous about the lesson. But I have to tell you, after a lesson with the instructor Todd Wagner (who was great), I cannot wait to one day (hopefully soon) actually play a round (it’s called a ’round’, right? I should have had my hubby proof read this lol) on a real course. The instructor had this super cool app where he’d record you practicing and then show you different improvements and things to do differently and then he’d show you the difference in your swing. My hubby thought the instruction was incredible. He kept telling me how even though he knew the basics, after the lesson he felt so much more comfortable and couldn’t wait to apply the techniques he had learned! He also mentioned that anyone who plays golf should totally take a lesson. Pretty much the second we got done with the lesson he was texting all his friends about the experience, I’d say it was a huge success!
- On the car ride up to Kohler, my husband and I were talking that while we’ve had good food lately, nothing has really stood out as being spectacular. Well, if this weekend didn’t change that opinion, I don’t know what will. Each bite of food we had was just flat out amazingly delicious. From the awesome veggie omelet I had at breakfast with the insane cappuccino (I mean LOOK at it ) at The Wisconsin Room to the truly incredible dinner we had at Blackwolf Run (where a highlight of the evening was Chef Paul Smitala coming out to the table to say hello) I cannot say enough about the food at The American Club resort. Last time I had visited, it was for the Food & Wine Experience, and everything had been delicious, but I didn’t get a chance to sit down and eat at any of the restaurants. This trip though, we took the opportunity to try different restaurants.
- For breakfast/brunch, have the brunch buffet at The Wisconsin Room, and order a cappuccino! If you’re looking for a quick bite to share, get a cinnamon roll at The Greenhouse, or just pick up a cup of complimentary coffee and sit in the beautiful stained-glass room.
- For lunch, get the chalkboard special (half a sandwich, soup, and a side salad) at the Horse & Plow (don’t forget the cheese curds) or make reservations at the River Wildlife cabin – wowza is their brunch/lunch amazing (a room full of appetizers and treats and then delicious menu options!)
- For dinner, a must is dinner at Blackwolf Run. The views are stunning – floor to ceiling windows looking out over the golf course. The food is incredible. We had a shrimp appetizer which was heavenly (apparently I’m now obsessed with shrimp) and then for dinner we had salmon on top of a bed of quinoa, and the worlds biggest and most delicious bone-in-pork. It was ginormous, but sooooo good! I was full but couldn’t stop eating it, it had this awesome apple slaw on top, I am making myself hungry just thinking about it. AND THE DESSERT. Ok, the dessert was the dessert to end all other desserts: creme brulee brownie sundae. That’s right – creme brulee, with brownies, with homemade kaluah ice cream, topped with homemade whipped cream, candied nuts and topped with a cherry! Sounds insane, right? It WAS!
- With all the food, we needed to get moving a little to ease the feelings of guilt over eating #allthefood – haha, I’m totally kidding. But it was a wellness weekend, so I wanted to make sure that we got in some activities that got us moving…and what better than to sign my hubby and I up for Yoga on the Lake?! Did I mention he had never done yoga? He was such a trooper, and he was really good at it. I’m not just saying that because he is my husband and I love him, but really, I would look over and he’d be doing a position along with everyone else! Also, I need to make mention that not only did they have adorable yoga mats for people to use, but the floor were heated! It was so relaxing and such a great wellness activity.
- When one things of ‘relaxation’ on a trip, what comes to mind? To me, I think of a spa! Massages are the ultimate relaxation activity for me, so I definitely included that in our itinerary. The Kohler Waters Spa is one of the best spas I have ever been to. Not only is it gorgeous, but every little aspect of the spa has been thought out. We even discovered a little roof top relaxation area that had this super cool fire wall in it! Spas aren’t just for women, in fact, there were more men than women in the little waiting area before going to get ones’ massage. I was secretly happy about this, just because it was my husbands’ first massage experience, so I wouldn’t have wanted him to be the only male in a waiting room full of females lol. He really liked the experience and said he would totally recommend it to his guy friends. So ladies, don’t be afraid to take your husband to the spa!
- Lastly, we did an activity neither of us had ever done before: trap shooting! Trap shooting is where you shoot moving clay discs. Our instructor, Sean, was great. As we were walking to the target area we walked by the pheasant cages and he totally indulged me as I asked a million questions and then stopped to some of them being rounded up for hunting. The whole experience was really neat. And guess what? I HIT TWO MOVING TARGETS (out of 20). I’d call that a HUGE success (never mind that hubby extraordinaire hit like 6-8!) The trap shooting took place on the grounds behind the River Wildlife cabin where they serve seriously incredible food, and they have a beautiful fire burning for you to warm your hands by!
- One thing I kept seeing around the grounds of The American Club Resort were these gorgeous floral arrangements, I mean just look at one of them (and they were everywhere)
Do you ever plan for wellness weekends?
Thank you to Destination Kohler for hosting us during our wellness weekend getaway. As always all thoughts and opinions are mine alone. Thank you for reading and supporting the brands I partner with, which make the SweetPhi blog possible.
Sign up for email updates and get a free eCookbook with our top 25 recipes!